Plano ISD will implement an eight-period day for its middle schools beginning in the 2023-24 school year.
At a recent Plano ISD Board of Trustees meeting, Lisa Wilson, deputy superintendent of learning, told the trustees that after speaking with six focus groups consisting of district staff, students and best practices consultants, they found that both students and teachers desire more time and support. Through a best practices focus group, the district learned about how they can employ early intervention to help students be more successful in addition to more innovative learning spaces and instructional design.
The aim to having an eight-period day for all of its middle schools is to provide teachers with more planning time and students with an intervention and enrichment class offering English and math support. Seventh and 8th graders will have an additional elective or will spend the extra period in an intervention class if needed.
Because more time had already been added to Plano ISD’s school days, Wilson said the schedule change will not impact the schools too much.
Teachers would have a period to conduct professional learning in addition to their planning and lunch periods. While their planning periods will be shortened by around three minutes, Wilson said the added period could help teachers with planning and offering more student support.
The eight-period schedule will take effect next school year. Additionally, the district aims to evolve its elective offerings for seventh and eighth graders.
Wilson said district staff will have future recommendations for the board on offering more student and teacher support at its middle schools in the coming meetings. Topics will include more course offerings, engagement, offering high school credits, more athletics, clubs, six-year academic planning and additional support.
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Winston Henvey is the reporter for the Mesquite News, Allen American and Plano Star Courier. Email him with story suggestions at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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